ANTILOG_13Jan15a

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20:45 2015-01-13

* I am beginning to learn the ropes of the IPython Notebook.

* I believe that to be a real "data scientist" or "mathematician" or whatever I want to call myself in my new life, post-artist, I have to use the TOOLS of the TRADE. IPython Notebook is one of those tools, in my conception of the "beginner".

* That is, I want to start with the right tools AT THE OUTSET. That's why I'm also busy learning the ins and outs of the HDF5 format. With H5 AND the IPython Notebook, I should be able to do something pretty amazing.

* For now, I don't have much going on with regard to said Notebooks. What I want to do is use HDF5 in new and interesting ways, maybe as a sort of "literary" format, where I keep lab reports fitted to the actual format. It's hierarchical and for the moment that seems "simpler" than using a relational database, at least from my perspective.

* What I would like to do, though, is to use the IPython Notebook format to teach simple mathematical concepts. I want to USE the Notebook format to TEACH HOW to use the IPython Notebook format itself, to teach simple math concepts.

* The common thread here, or "guiding principle" is that to learn science, you learn through the tools of science. To teach science, you teach through the use of the tools of science.

* That means that I am having to get my scientific METHOD down pat. That's partly why I started this ANTILOG: To document the everyday practise of "becoming-a-scientist".

* I have been an artist my whole life and it has stopped being interesting to me. To make it interesting again, I began to RESEARCH MYSELF. That is, I began to RESEARCH my own "Practise".

* What resulted was a kind of "Research Practise of Practise Research". Research-as-Practise + Practise-as-Research.

* I then started a new project called The Archives-Project that was my first test subject for my Research Practise or Art-Based Reflective Practise. I also started another project tentatively called "20 Years of Data" whose first chapter is called The Datatypes Project: Abstract Assemblage.

* It is in the latter project that I am learning mathematical concepts, objects, spaces, mathematical "entities" in the mathematical ontology (foundational) so that I can TEACH the same concepts to others.

* What happened is that a) I was always secretly in love with mathematics, but didn't dare tell anyone for fear of being publicly shamed and b) I have had enough of hearing people tell me they "suck at math".

* I think that's just false. I think math is simple, people just maybe haven't been TAUGHT the right way. There are much more complex and complicated concepts in everyday speech that arise than in simple mathematics. Besides, in math, every concept is a kind of leverage point to learning new concepts. It's a science, so you start with the basic concepts and work your way up.

* Wherever you stand on the Mathematics Ladder, you are always at some "rung". To get to the next rung of the ladder, you have to learn a few concepts. The first concepts you learn at whichever rung, are always simple. You move simple concept by simple concept, up the ladder.

* Math is simple if you take it concept by concept and go at your own pace. There's nothing too "abstract" for human thought. It only gets "too abstract" when you are in super advanced math mode, and for that we have a handful of geniuses in the world capable of operating at the HIGHEST MATH MODE. The rest of us are all "beginners" in comparison to the few real math geniuses that exist at any given time on planet earth.

* So pick up where you left off and add a concept or two. I think math isn't just beautiful, it's really good for your soul, good for the heart. It requires discipline in your thinking. You have to learn mathematical THINKING, and that is a profoundly and powerfully USEFUL thing to have, a veritable ASSET.

* With that being said, I have continued making these evolutionary art pieces in the interim, these digital images. I have written about it in one of my blogs, a piece which has actually become rather popular.

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